WASHINGTON, July 30, 2013 – The World Bank Board of Executive Directors today approved a US$19.8 million grant for the Tajikistan Health Services Improvement Project, which aims to improve maternal and child health outcomes by increasing the coverage and quality of basic primary health care services in rural health facilities of Tajikistan.
The new Project is being financed through a US$15 million grant from the International Development Association (IDA) and US$4.8 million from the multi-donor Health Results Innovation Trust Fund (HRITF). The Government of Tajikistan contributed an additional US$3.20 million to the project.
The Project seeks to improve primary health care services in the districts of the Khatlon and Sughd regions through: 1) piloting the use of performance-based incentives to primary health care facilities; 2) training primary health care doctors and nurses; 3) physical rehabilitation and renovation of selected primary health care facility infrastructure and provision of basic medical equipment; and 4) building capacity at the central, regional, and district levels to manage and implement the performance-based financing scheme.
The proposed project will be implemented in eight districts of Tajikistan, covering 1.86 million people, representing around 25 percent of the country’s population.
“Residents of Tajikistan regularly raise concerns about access to and quality of primary health care. Working with the Government and concerned citizens, the project aims to address these concerns using a tested, innovative approach to improve performance of primary healthcare providers,” said Marsha Olive, World Bank Country Manager for Tajikistan. “By making primary health care facilities, including those in remote areas, more effective in providing services to the population, we strive to make families healthier and better off in the future.”
Since 2000 the World Bank has been supporting the Government of Tajikistan in strengthening the country’s health sector through programs that supported the introduction and implementation of health reforms, including per capita financing for primary healthcare, strengthening capacity of medical workers, and rehabilitation of infrastructure. Given the problem of childhood malnutrition in Tajikistan, the World Bank also supports the provision of micronutrient supplements and nutrition education to women and children through a grant from the Japan Social Development Fund.
As the World Bank commemorates its 20 years of partnership with Tajikistan this year, the human development sector continues to play an important role in the Bank’s overall portfolio. As a result, over 4,000 healthcare system workers received training, and 20 percent of country’s Primary Health Care network has been completely renovated.
As of June 2013, the active portfolio of the World Bank in Tajikistan currently consists of 14 projects with a net commitment of US$232.6 million. The largest share of the portfolio is in agriculture and rural development (40 percent), followed by water and sanitation (15 percent), human development (14 percent), energy (13 percent), the public sector (12 percent), and the private sector (6 percent).